You might think that this would be a personal experience and, therefore, impossible to define past a very general outline but research actually says otherwise. We can prove exactly what skills and styles make a person successful because we have so many iconic figures to choose from when drawing a parallel and to make matters simpler, although they diverge on the small details, they all seem to agree on the big picture.
The first point which most top CEO’s agree on (including Steve Jobs and Chris Gardner) is a genuine passion for the industry. Gardner is quoted as saying, “the most inspiring leaders are those who don’t work at a job but pursue a calling. In doing so they inspire the rest of us to be our best selves and to match our skills with our passions.” Essentially the level of commitment and need for quick answers to important situations and questions means that you have to be fully immersed in your industry, which isn’t going to happen if you’re just doing a job.
Another unilateral agreement is that you have to be a thought leader and not simply a follower of trends. Take Mark Zuckerberg or any of a hundred other self made millionaires (or in his case billionaires) and you’ll find individuals who thought about what people were missing and developed a plan to give it to them. This is only a part of it though, your creation needs a solid business plan in order to make you a real profit but although Zuckerberg is a creative he had the wherewithal to hire and engage with people who had the business skills he lacked at the time.
Confidence is another virtue that you’re not going to be successful without. You can’t control the world if you don’t inherently feel that you’re up to the task. Being able to lead a team or a business is impossible if you’re constantly second guessing yourself. This doesn’t mean that you can’t take advice it just means that once you’ve weighed up all of your options you’re able to select a course of action and stick with it.
Be relentless. You need to create and visualize a goal and never let it go until you’ve accomplished it. This is something which is hard to train yourself to do unless it’s an inherent part of your personality, but it is possible. You’ll face a dozen hurdles a day from limited resources to a competitive market but you can’t allow any of them to either slow or stop you from pursuing your vision.
Author Byline: Ben Goodman is a blogger and graphic designer. If you are looking for jobs in Cape Town, check out Jobvine.co.za South Africa’s leading job portal.